UCDP GED and Open Data

The benefit of datasets is that they are a great tool for cross comparison of attributes and trends. Therefore, establishing a resource that compares and elucidates trends relating to organized violent conflict would be extremely beneficial for peace research and policy. However, the dataset will only be of significance as long as it applies specified standards for structuring the data that are both machine and human readable. In addition, datasets open to the public should focus on relational database models and devise a clear ontology for the data in order to optimize interoperability and information exchange. The UCDP GED is a good example of open data within the subfield of GIScience because it has had success cataloguing events that are difficult to observe and classify within the geospatial and temporal domains. Events of organized violence are difficult to observe due to their sporadic, socially complex, and seemingly irrational nature.

UCDP GED also highlights the importance of the subfield of geocoding within GIScience. Limitations and conflicts in geocoding events of organized violence for the UCDP GED are apparent in the divide between the ability to code rural locations of violence as opposed to urban locations. We notice a digital and informational divide between places that are poorer and less populated compared to places with greater population densities and more wealth. Alternative geocoding resources and databases therefore become of utmost importance for mapping and observing organized violent conflict in rural areas. Limitation of geospatial frameworks for rural areas also allude to approaches of uncertainty in spatial data. Therefore, what methods do we apply in order to compensate and aggregate for marginalized place that that lack geospatial frameworks and coding?


One Response to “UCDP GED and Open Data”

  1. MTM says:

    Great concluding question! I am planning on asking a similar question for our discussion tomorrow :)